The EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020

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More information on the European Union is available on the Internet (http://europa.eu) Cataloguing data can be found at the end of this publication Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union, 2011 ISBN 978-92-79-20762-4 doi: 10.2779/39229 © European Union, 2011 Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged Printed in Belgium

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....................................................................................................................................... 7 The Six Targets of the Biodiversity Strategy.............................................................. 16 TARGET 4 Ensure the sustainable use of fisheries resources ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 18 TARGET 5 Combat Invasive Alien Species ......................................................................................................................................................................................... 5 Introduction ...................................................................................................................................................... 27 .......................................................................................................................Contents Foreword ................................... 21 Implementation of the EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy .................................... 4 The EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy..........................................................................................................................................................................................11 TARGET 1 Fully implement the Birds and Habitats Directives ........................... 12 TARGET 2 Maintain and restore ecosystems and their services...................................................................................................... 20 TARGET 6 Step-up action to tackle the global biodiversity crisis ............................................... 14 TARGET 3 Increase the contribution of agriculture and forestry to biodiversity ....................................................................................... 23 Further reading................................................................................................................................

But ever greater pressure on this most precious natural resource means that we now find ourselves at a turning point. and whose loss comes at a high price. The main challenges ahead include the full and efficient implementation of nature protection legislation – especially the effective management and restoration of areas of high biodiversity  value in Natura 2000 – tackling invasive alien species and protecting ecosystem services. Each target is accompanied by a corresponding set of actions. inclusive and sustainable growth. agricultural and forestry policies to protecting biodiversity will be key to its success. in 2010. Biodiversity policies will also need to be integrated to sectoral policies and be taken into account in wider policy concerns. in the conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in Nagoya. The new strategy also fully acknowledges the economic value of ecosystem services and the need to restore them for the benefit of the economy. With this new strategy. Japan. It is also about maintaining nature’s capacity to deliver the goods and services that we all need. The new biodiversity strategy is built around six measurable targets that focus on the main drivers of biodiversity loss. This is why increasing the contribution of fisheries. where we risk losing many of the vital services we depend upon. In May 2011. Biodiversity loss is one of the main environmental challenges facing the planet. the EU is striving to ensure that its natural capital is managed sustainably for the benefit of future generations. the European Union adopted a new strategy to halt biodiversity loss in the EU. Biodiversity has been one of my top priorities since taking up office and I will do all in my power to make sure that the ambitious targets set in the new strategy are reached. It is a pledge I will stand behind – we cannot afford to miss them. and step up efforts to avert global biodiversity loss. 4 . including the EU and all its Member States. Efforts have already been made in that direction by making the biodiversity strategy an integral part of Europe’s wider 2020 Strategy for smart. restore ecosystems where possible.Foreword by Commissioner Potočnik Biodiversity – the variety of life on the planet – is essential for our economy and for our well-being. Conserving biodiversity is not just about protecting species and habitats for their own sake. The strategy is in line with the commitments made by EU leaders in March 2010 and the international commitments adopted by 193 countries.

The EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy The Mediterranean – a global biodiversity hotspot 5 .

Sand dune habitats are under increasing threat in the EU 6 . valued and appropriately restored for biodiversity’s intrinsic value and for their essential contribution to human well-being and economic prosperity.The 2050 vision By 2050. and restoring them in so far as feasible. and so that catastrophic changes caused by the loss of biodiversity are avoided. while stepping up the EU contribution to averting global biodiversity loss. 2020 headline target Halting the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services in the EU by 2020. European Union biodiversity and the ecosystem services it provides – its natural capital – are protected.

and lays down the policy foundations for EU-level action over the next ten years. As a Party to the Convention. It focuses on six major targets to address the main pressures on nature and ecosystem services in the EU and beyond. the new strategy also highlights. Biodiversity loss is in fact very costly for society. Flower-rich grasslands and large blue butterfly – both protected under the EU Habitats Directive New focus on ecosystem services The 2020 Biodiversity Strategy follows on from the 2006 EU Biodiversity Action Plan. 7 . habitats. The EU leaders therefore decided to adopt a new long-term vision and headline target to give impetus to redoubling efforts to conserve Europe’s increasingly threatened biodiversity.Introduction The EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 On 3 May 2011. A strong political mandate The strategy responds to two important political mandates adopted by the 27 European Heads of State in 2010. the cost of inaction is expected to be even higher. Consequently. despite a number of major successes in some areas. while stepping up the EU’s contribution to averting global biodiversity loss. Many farmers. ecosystems and the services they provide over the next decade. for instance. At that meeting. The second mandate results from international commitments which the EU and all its Member States signed up to at the biodiversity summit in Nagoya. The first mandate stems from the conclusion that the current EU biodiversity policy was not achieving its targets. Within the EU as a whole. particularly for sectors that depend heavily on ecosystem services. depend on insect pollination for their harvests. 193 Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity adopted a series of landmark agreements. Although action to halt biodiversity loss requires money. learning lessons from its implementation and raising the level of ambition for 2020. the immense value of ecosystem services and the urgent need to maintain and restore these for the benefit of both nature and society. in addition to halting the loss of biodiversity. the EU is required to bring its own biodiversity policy into line with these international commitments. the estimated economic value of insect pollination is b15 billion a year. the European Commission adopted a new strategy to halt the loss of biodiversity and improve the state of Europe’s species. Japan in October 2010. for the first time.

produced an EU Biodiversity Baseline which summarises the latest information on the status and trends of biodiversity and ecosystem components in Europe. which is based on a series of indicators. By 2020. At present only 17% of assessed habitats and species are in a favourable conservation status. in particular whether the following has been achieved: • A reduction in the number of species threatened with extinction. • An improvement in the state of ecosystems and the services they provide. in collaboration with the European Commission. This baseline. Today. Currently almost 25% of European animal species face the risk of extinction.The State of Europe’s Biodiversity in 2010 In 2010 the European Environment Agency (EEA). Group/IUCN category Mammals – marine Mammals – terrestrial Birds Amphibians Reptiles Dragonflies Butterflies Species (%) within the EU-27 threatened with extinction 25% 15% 12% 22% 21% 16% 7% 8 . • A decline in the over-exploitation of natural resources. Europeans currently consume more than twice what the EU’s land and sea can deliver in terms of natural resources. nearly 30% of the EU-27 territory is considered to be highly to moderately fragmented. provides a reference point for measuring changes in the state of Europe’s biodiversity over the next ten years. Most of Europe’s ecosystems are now assessed to be degraded. • An increase in the number of species and habitat types protected under EU nature legislation that are in favourable conservation status. a set of biodiversity indicators should help determine whether there has been an overall improvement in the state of Europe’s biodiversity. • A strengthening of Europe’s green infrastructure.

They aim to reduce key pressures on nature and ecosystem services in the EU by stepping up efforts to fully implement existing EU nature legislation. the Biodiversity Strategy underwent extensive consultation with key stakeholders. 9 . Tighter controls on Invasive Alien Species. The full implementation of the EU nature legislation. Member States and the general public. The six targets covered by the EU strategy focus on: 1. anchoring biodiversity objectives into key sectoral policies. and greater use of green infrastructure. 2. Better management of EU fish stocks and more sustainable fisheries. A greater EU contribution to averting global biodiversity loss. Better protection and restoration of ecosystems and the services they provide. and closing important policy gaps. This not only ensured a transparent decision-making process. It is clear that biodiversity conservation cannot be achieved without the widespread engagement of society as a whole. The strategy is also underpinned by an EU 2010 baseline on the state of biodiversity and ecosystems in Europe. 4. More sustainable agriculture and forestry. key policy sectors and civil society will therefore be fundamental to the success of the new 2020 Biodiversity Strategy. Each target is accompanied by a set of focused. 3. and 6.Six targets for 2020 The EU strategy is built around six mutually supportive and inter-dependent targets which address the main drivers of biodiversity loss. The active involvement of stakeholders. time-bound actions to ensure these ambitions are fully realised. but also helped to build interest and support for the strategy amongst a wide range of different sectors of society. Global aspects are also addressed to ensure the EU contributes fully to implementing international biodiversity commitments. The estimated economic value of insect pollination within the EU is €15 billion a year Extensive consultation Before its adoption. 5. This baseline provides a reference point for monitoring and measuring progress over the next ten years and will help assess whether the EU is on track towards meeting the biodiversity targets for 2020.

Structure of the EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy 2050 VISION halt biodiversity loss – restore ecosystem services – global contribution 2020 headline target SIX TARGETS 1 Enhance implementation of nature legislation 2 Restore ecosystems establish Green Infrastructure 3 Sustainable agriculture and forestry 4 Sustainable fisheries 5 Combat Alien Invasive Species 6 Contribute to averting global biodiversity loss ACTIONS 10 .

The Six Targets of the 2020 Biodiversity Strategy Farming practices have a major influence on Europe's biodiversity 11 .

The EU Natura 2000 Network protects Europe’s rarest and most threatened species. of which there are now 26. 34% of the habitats and 26% of the species should either have reached a favourable conservation status or shown a significant improvement in their status (e. over 26. only 17% of the habitat types and species protected under the Habitats Directive show a favourable conservation status at the EU-biogeographical level. or analogous state for birds. reached and maintained. • the promotion and sharing of experience. It calls in particular for the establishment and timely implementation of site management plans and the further integration of species and habitat management requirements into key land and water use policies wherever possible. Currently. Together. by 2020. especially in the marine environment.g. and • increased cooperation with key sectors and stakeholder groups to improve the enforcement of the two directives. Similarly for birds. good practice and crossborder collaboration on the management of Natura 2000. Other specific actions which have been identified to achieve this target include: • the completion of the Natura 2000 Network. The Directives also require Member States to set up a general system of protection for all wild bird species in the EU and for other threatened species listed in the Habitats Directive. within the same legal framework. The Strategy also pays particular attention to ensuring the effective management of Natura 2000 sites. both within and outside Natura 2000. These two Directives are the cornerstones of the EU’s biodiversity policy. the majority being in an unfavourable-inadequate or unfavourable-bad state. • the provision of adequate financing for the conservation measures required for Natura 2000 sites at both EU and national/regional level. to conserve Europe’s most endangered and valuable species and habitats across their entire natural range within the EU. oriented towards a favourable situation which needs to be defined. The overall objective of the two Directives is not simply to prevent extinction. Only 52% of the European bird species are deemed to be in a secure condition at present. Achieving a favourable conservation status The new Biodiversity Strategy aim is to achieve a significant and measurable improvement in the conservation status of species and habitats protected under the two nature Directives. Having such a time-bound quantified target will help to speed up implementation. enabling all 27 EU Member States to work together.TARGET 1 Fully implement the Birds and Habitats Directives Coordinated action to save Europe’s most threatened biodiversity The first target focuses on ensuring the full and timely implementation of the Habitats and Birds Directives.000. Thus. from a bad status to an inadequate one). They require Member States to designate and manage core areas for the conservation of around 2000 rare and threatened species and habitat types deemed to be of EU importance in view of their vulnerability. • the integration of species and habitat protection and management requirements into key land and water policies. the aim is for 80% of bird species to be either secure or improving by 2020.000 sites have been designated so far across the EU 12 . make up the Natura 2000 Network. Instead. across their natural range within the EU. These sites. it is defined in positive terms. these measures are designed to ensure that the species and habitats they aim to protect are maintained and restored to a favourable conservation status.

and by developing better compliance promotion capacities. Action 2 Ensure adequate financing of Natura 2000 sites 2) The Commission and Member States will provide the necessary funds and incentives for Natura 2000. 4b) The Commission will create a dedicated ICT tool as part of the Biodiversity Information System for Europe to improve the availability and use of data by 2012. will develop by 2012 a new EU bird reporting system. further develop the reporting system under Article 17 of the Habitats Directive and improve the flow. under the next Multi-annual Financial Framework. by 2020. together with Member States. accessibility and relevance of Natura 2000 data. 1d) The Commission. Action 3 Increase stakeholder awareness and involvement and improve enforcement 3a) The Commission. within the biogeographical frameworks set out in the Habitats Directive. and • 50% more species assessments under the Birds Directive show a secure or improved status. The new Biodiversity Strategy aims for a significant and measurable improvement in the conservation status of protected species and habitats 13 . both within and beyond Natura 2000 areas. compared to current assessments: • 100% more habitat assessments and 50% more species assessments under the Habitats Directive show an improved conservation status. together with Member States. together with Member States. 3c) The Commission and Member States will facilitate enforcement of the nature directives by providing specific training programmes on Natura 2000 for judges and public prosecutors. will develop and launch a major communication campaign on Natura 2000 by 2013.Target 1 Fully implement the Birds and Habitats Directives To halt the deterioration in the status of all species and habitats covered by EU nature legislation and achieve a significant and measurable improvement in their status so that. good practice and cross-border collaboration on the management of Natura 2000. including through EUfunding instruments. including in the marine environment. Action 4 Improve and streamline monitoring and reporting 4a) The Commission. is largely complete by 2012. 1c) Member States will ensure that management plans or equivalent instruments which set out conservation and restoration measures are developed and implemented in a timely manner for all Natura 2000 sites. The Commission will set out its views in 2011 on how Natura 2000 will be financed under the next Multi-annual Financial Framework. 1b) Member States and the Commission will further integrate species and habitat protection and management requirements into key land and water use policies. will establish by 2012 a process to promote the sharing of experience. Action 1 Complete the establishment of the Natura 2000 Network and ensure good management 1a) Member States and the Commission will ensure that the phase to establish Natura 2000. 3b) The Commission and Member States will improve cooperation with key sectors and continue to develop guidance documents to improve their understanding of the requirements of EU nature legislation and its value in promoting economic development.

The strategy proposes that a strategic framework be developed by Member States. national and subnational level by 2014. fibres. The Commission intends. It will be supported by work to map and assess the state of ecosystems and their services. Healthy ecosystems provide a stream of goods and services vital to society. the annual loss of opportunity due to the current over-exploitation of global fisheries is estimated at US$ 50 billion. healthy soils. action under this target will also seek to promote a wider no net loss approach to biodiversity and ecosystem services. and to society at large. and their economic value is not recognised by the markets. It can reconnect fragmented natural areas and improve their functional connectivity within the wider countryside. protection against floods and erosion etc. The study on The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB). For example. for instance through more integrated spatial planning and the development of multifunctional zones that are capable of delivering benefits to both biodiversity.TARGET 2 Maintain and restore ecosystems and their services A strategic approach to restoring Europe’s ecosystems The second target focuses on maintaining and enhancing ecosystem services. It can also encourage a better use of naturebased approaches to tackle climate change and to improve resource efficiency. co-financed by the Commission. consequently their true economic worth is not reflected in society’s decisionmaking and accounts. many of Europe’s ecosystems are now heavily degraded which drastically reduces their ability to deliver these valuable services. provides real-world examples of the cost of biodiversity loss. clean water. global business opportunities from investing in biodiversity could be worth up to US$ 6 trillion by 2050. Healthy natural ecosystems provide a range of goods and services to society – such as cork oak. such as food. This will be achieved by ‘biodiversity-proofing’ EUfunded projects. This not only affects biodiversity but also undermines the many services that healthy ecosystems provide society. Promoting a European green infrastructure The strategy also calls for the development of a green infrastructure for Europe. The EU is one of the most fragmented continents in the world. protection against floods and erosion. and by ensuring that any unavoidable residual impacts are compensated for or offset. Unfortunately. to put forward a new strategy on an EU-wide green infrastructure by 2012. The problem is further exacerbated by the fact that these services are often public goods. the land user. therefore. insect pollination 14 . plans and programmes wherever possible. Ensuring no net loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services Finally. On the other hand. in line with the global goal set in 2010 to restore at least 15% of degraded ecosystems. infrastructure developments and changing land uses. and restoring degraded ecosystems across the EU. such as a clean water supply. Building a green infrastructure can help overcome many of these challenges. Thirty percent of the land is moderately to highly fragmented due to urban sprawl. and to better integrate the value of ecosystem services into national and EU accounting and reporting systems. clean water and carbon storage. to set priorities for ecosystem restoration at EU. assisted by the Commission.

many of Europe’s ecosystems are becoming degraded and fragmented which substantially reduces their ability to deliver these valuable services 15 . However. with the assistance of the Commission. the Commission will develop a methodology for assessing the impact of EU-funded projects. will develop a strategic framework to set priorities for ecosystem restoration at sub-national. ecosystems and their services are maintained and enhanced by establishing green infrastructure and restoring at least 15% of degraded ecosystems.g. 7b) The Commission will carry out further work with a view to proposing by 2015 an initiative to ensure there is no net loss of ecosystems and their services (e. Action 6 Set priorities to restore and promote the use of green infrastructure 6a) By 2014. Action 7 Ensure no net loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services 7a) In collaboration with the Member States.Target 2 Maintain and restore ecosystems and their services By 2020. with the assistance of the Commission. national and EU level. Action 5 Improve knowledge of ecosystems and their services in the EU 5) Member States. for example through better targeted use of EU funding streams and Public Private Partnerships. through compensation or offsetting schemes). including through incentives to encourage up-front investments in green infrastructure projects and the maintenance of ecosystem services. assess the economic value of such services. Member States. 6b) The Commission will develop a Green Infrastructure Strategy by 2012 to promote the deployment of green infrastructure in the EU in urban and rural areas. will map and assess the state of ecosystems and their services in their national territory by 2014. plans and programmes on biodiversity by 2014. and promote the integration of these values into accounting and reporting systems at EU and national level by 2020.

it will be important to step up these efforts for greater integration. with equally devastating consequences for biodiversity. The trend for Europe’s forests is equally worrying. despite the benefits that biodiversity and ecosystem services bring for all concerned. The current reform of the CAP. Most of the productive forests continue to be managed as commercial plantations with only limited biodiversity value. 16 . only 15–25% of Europe’s once extensive high nature value farmland remains and only 7% of habitats and 3% of species protected by the Habitats Directive that depend on agricultural practices have a favourable conservation status. Forestry and farming activities cover 72% of the EU territory Integrating biodiversity needs into the CAP The European Commission and Member States have already made efforts to integrate biodiversity into the Common Agricultural Policy. Only 21% of forest habitats and 15% of forest species protected under the Habitats Directive have a favourable conservation status and just 1–3% of Europe’s forests are still in an entirely natural and unmanaged state. Particular attention will therefore be paid to engaging stakeholders in the delivery of this target. The actions foreseen in the biodiversity strategy are designed to tap into these opportunities as much as possible in order to increase the positive contribution that agriculture and forestry can make to maintaining and enhancing Europe’s biodiversity while remaining viable businesses. present important opportunities to further enhance synergies and maximise coherence between the objectives of biodiversity conservation and those of farming and forestry. farming practices have changed dramatically over the years. whilst those who could not do so became increasingly marginalised and were sometimes forced to abandon their land. whereas farmland butterfly populations have decreased by 70% since 1990 and show no sign of recovery. Farming has been a major contributor to Europe’s biodiversity. it is foreseen that direct payments will be adjusted to better reward the delivery of environmental public goods which go beyond cross-compliance and the potential for rural development measures to also deliver biodiversity conservation objectives will be improved. In the case of forestry. However. and foster innovative mechanisms to finance the maintenance and restoration of ecosystem services that are generated by sustainably managed multifunctional forests. Many farms intensified their activities and became highly mechanised. Farmland bird populations have also decreased by around 50% since 1980 but have since levelled off. These two sectors combined concern almost 72% of the land in the EU and play a major role in Europe’s biodiversity. and the new Multi-annual Financial Framework for 2014–2020. In particular. Creating positive incentives for farmers and forest holders to deliver biodiversity objectives is the backbone to achieving this target. However.TARGET 3 Increase the contribution of agriculture and forestry to biodiversity Farming and forestry: a major influence The third target focuses on improving the integration of biodiversity conservation into key policies for agriculture and forestry. thanks to centuries of diverse farming traditions which have resulted in the wide range of agricultural landscapes we see today. Today. the actions aim to encourage forest holders to adopt forest management plans that integrate biodiversity measures. as elsewhere in the world.

3B) Forests: By 2020. in particular as regards the diversity of species. thus contributing to enhance sustainable management. and climate change adaptation needs.Target 3 increase the contribution of agriculture and forestry to maintaining and enhancing biodiversity 3A) Agriculture: By 2020. Action 12 Integrate biodiversity measures in forest management plans 12) Member States will ensure that forest management plans or equivalent instruments include as many of the following measures as possible: - maintain optimal levels of deadwood. Action 10 Conserve Europe’s agricultural genetic diversity 10) The Commission and Member States will encourage the uptake of agri-environmental measures to support genetic diversity in agriculture and explore the scope for developing a strategy for the conservation of genetic diversity. 9b) The Commission and Member States will establish mechanisms to facilitate collaboration among farmers and foresters to achieve continuity of landscape features. - preserve wilderness areas. 11b) Member States and the Commission will foster innovative mechanisms (e. permanent pasture. - specific measures developed for Natura 2000 forest sites. maximise areas under agriculture across grasslands. 8b) The Commission will propose to improve and simplify the GAEC (Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions) cross-compliance standards and consider including the Water Framework Directive within the scope of cross-compliance once the Directive has been implemented and the operational obligations for farmers have been identified in order to improve the state of aquatic ecosystems in rural areas. in line with activities carried out in the European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS). Payments for Ecosystem Services) to finance the maintenance and restoration of ecosystem services provided by multifunctional forests. - ecosystem-based measures to increase the resilience of forests against fires as part of forest fire prevention schemes. - ensuring that afforestation is carried out in accordance with the Pan-European Operational Level Guidelines for SFM. Action 8 Enhance direct payments for environmental public goods in the EU Common Agricultural Policy 8a) The Commission will propose that CAP direct payments will reward the delivery of environmental public goods that go beyond cross-compliance (e. arable land and permanent crops that are covered by biodiversity-related measures under the CAP so as to ensure the conservation of biodiversity and to bring about a measurable improvement in the conservation status of species and habitats that depend on or are affected by agriculture and in the provision of ecosystem services as compared to the EU2010 Baseline. green cover. Action 9 Better target Rural Development to biodiversity conservation 9a) The Commission and Member States will integrate quantified biodiversity targets into Rural Development strategies and programmes. inter alia through use of rural development measures and the LIFE+ programme. taking into account regional variations such as fire risk or potential insect outbreaks. Action 11 Encourage forest holders to protect and enhance forest biodiversity 11a) Member States and the Commission will encourage the adoption of Management Plans. tailoring action to regional and local needs. in line with Sustainable Forest Management (SFM). Natura 2000). protection of genetic resources and other cooperation mechanisms to protect biodiversity. Forest Management Plans or equivalent instruments. 17 . are in place for all forests that are publicly owned and for forest holdings above a certain size (to be defined by the Member States or regions and communicated in their Rural Development Programmes) that receive funding under the EU Rural Development Policy so as to bring about a measurable improvement in the conservation status of species and habitats that depend on or are affected by forestry and in the provision of related ecosystem services as compared to the EU 2010 Baseline. ecological set-aside. crop rotation.g.g.

levels. The latter will be designed to encourage fishermen to use more selective fishing gear. representing up to 20–60% of the total catch weight in certain fisheries and causing untold damage to the marine ecosystems. undersized fish and other marine organisms) also remains unacceptably high. Most fish stocks in the EU are overfished and the rate of discards remains unacceptably high.TARGET 4 Ensure the sustainable use of fisheries resources European seas are heavily overfished The fourth target aims to combat overfishing and ensure a more sustainable ecosystem-based management of fisheries resources. and the catching capacity of the European fleet remains more than twice what is needed to harvest our own fish stocks sustainably. more productive. Taking action to combat overfishing and improve marine biodiversity In recognition of the important relationship between commercial fisheries and the health of Europe’s marine ecosystems. a loss. In particular it calls for long-term management plans to be developed for all major fish stocks in line with the principle of ‘maximum sustainable yield’ (MSY). unwanted. Action is also foreseen to eliminate adverse impacts of commercial fishing on other marine species and habitats. and for all the associated industries which depend upon the wild capture sector. varying from as much as 82% in the Mediterranean to 63% in the Atlantic. This is not only a problem for the marine ecosystem but is also bad news for the fishermen themselves. on average three out of four stocks are overfished. and entire ecosystems. The latest reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) proposed by the European Commission in July 2011. despite these warning signs. rising costs and the need to travel further and fish longer to catch fewer and often less valuable fish mean that. thus exhausting individual fish stocks and threatening the marine ecosystem. for instance by phasing out of discards and by providing financial incentives for fishermen to adapt their fishing activities. Shrinking catches. many boats now operate at. decisions on catch levels remain dominated by short-term thinking. Despite important reforms to the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy in 2002. will be CFP-aims to put an end to the depletion of fish stocks and instead to promote a more coherent ecosystem-based approach for all fisheries. The rate of discards (the dumping of dead. diversify their activities and play a more active role in helping to manage and conserve Europe’s marine biodiversity. Today. causing untold damage to marine ecosystems 18 . and the new Common Fisheries Fund (2014–2020). This is defined as the highest catch that can be safely taken year after year whilst maintaining the fish population size at maximum productivity. The new Biodiversity Strategy will also support the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive which aims to bring all EU marine waters into a good environmental status by 2020. most of Europe’s commercial fish stocks remain over-exploited. in some sectors of the industry. or close to. the new strategy places special emphasis on improving the management of fished stocks and ensuring that these are restored to healthier. Vessels are catching more fish than can be safely reproduced. Yet.

including areas regulated by Regional Fisheries Management Organisations. The 2020 Biodiversiy Strategy aims to make fishing practices more sustainable and less damaging to wildlife 19 . to avoid the by-catch of unwanted species and to preserve vulnerable marine ecosystems in accordance with EU legislation and international obligations. monitoring and managing marine biodiversity. and combating marine litter. through fisheries management with no significant adverse impacts on other stocks. as required under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive. and the waters of third countries with which the EU has concluded Fisheries Partnership Agreements. species and ecosystems. Action 14 Eliminate adverse impacts on fish stocks. including through providing financial incentives through the future financial instruments for fisheries and maritime policy for marine protected areas (including Natura 2000 areas and those established by international or regional agreements). 13b) The Commission and Member States will develop and implement under the CFP long-term management plans with harvest control rules based on the MSY approach. adapting fishing activities and promoting the involvement of the sector in alternative activities. Once this objective is attained. species. such as eco-tourism. scientific advice will be sought to incorporate ecological considerations in the definition of MSY by 2020. habitats and ecosystems 14a) The EU will design measures to gradually eliminate discards. Achieve a population age and size distribution indicative of a healthy stock. 13c) The Commission and Member States will significantly step up their work to collect data to support implementation of MSY.Target 4 Ensure the sustainable use of fisheries resources Achieve Maximum Sustainable Yield (MSY) by 2015. This could include restoring marine ecosystems. Action 13 Improve the management of fished stocks 13a) The Commission and Member States will maintain and restore fish stocks to levels that can produce MSY in all areas in which EU fish fleets operate. These plans should be designed to respond to specific time-related targets and be based on scientific advice and sustainability principles. in support of achieving Good Environmental Status by 2020. 14b) The Commission and Member States will support the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive.

Alien species are plants. but many can become invasive. crop yield losses. damage to protected species and so forth. and share good practices amongst Member States in their eradication. Invasive Alien Species are considered to be a major threat to biodiversity. It has been estimated that the costs associated with Invasive Alien Species in Europe amount to some €12. fungi and micro-organisms that have been transported across ecological barriers and become established in areas outside their natural range. priority species are controlled or eradicated.damage to the navigability of rivers. the number of Invasive Alien Species in Europe has grown substantially in recent years. spreading rapidly across the natural environment. animals. and pathways are managed to prevent the introduction and establishment of new IAS. displacing and out-competing native species. in terms of health care and animal health costs. As elsewhere in the world.TARGET 5 Combat Invasive Alien Species Tackling the problem of Invasive Alien Species The fifth target aims to ensure there is a comprehensive and coordinated EU-level response to prevent and control the introduction and spread of harmful Invasive Alien Species (IAS) across the EU. Action 16 Establish a dedicated legislative instrument on Invasive Alien Species 16) The Commission will fill policy gaps in combating IAS by developing a dedicated legislative instrument by 2012. damage to infrastructure. Harlequin ladybirds and water hyacinth: both invasive alien species that have spread rapidly across the EU Target 5 Combat Invasive Alien Species By 2020. fish stock losses. Particular attention will be paid to establishing an EU-wide early warning system and rapid response mechanism to promptly detect and control the spread of the Invasive Alien Species. Action 15 Strengthen the EU Plant and Animal Health Regimes 15) The Commission will integrate additional biodiversity concerns into the Plant and Animal Health Regimes by 2012. Invasive Alien Species (IAS) and their pathways are identified and prioritised. Invasive Alien Species are also of major economic and social concern. 20 .5 billion annually. second only to habitat loss. Not all alien species are harmful. Under the new Biodiversity Strategy the Commission will propose a dedicated legislative instrument by 2012 to address common challenges associated with IAS in the EU.

The international community has also failed to achieve the global target agreed in 2002 of significantly reducing biodiversity loss worldwide by 2010. including work to reform. Supporting international commitments The actions foreseen in the strategy aim not only to ensure the EU fulfils the commitments it made in Nagoya in 2010 and in other international fora. and already 20% of the world’s tropical coral reefs have been lost. Europe must also address the impact that its increasingly high consumption patterns are having on the rest of the planet. invertebrate and plant groups are threatened with extinction. Between 12% and 55% of selected vertebrate. Europeans rely heavily on the import of a wide range of goods and resources from outside the EU: coffee. and propose legislation to implement the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilisation so that the EU can ratify the Protocol as soon as possible.TARGET 6 Step-up action to tackle the global biodiversity crisis Europe’s role in global biodiversity The last target focuses on the EU’s contribution to global biodiversity conservation. the EU is fully committed to helping combat biodiversity loss across the globe and to fulfilling its global commitments under the Convention. • enhance the contribution of trade policy to conserving biodiversity. as the world’s biggest trading bloc. In addition. Actions foreseen under the strategy will in particular aim to: • reduce the biodiversity impacts of EU consumption patterns. Over 13 million hectares of tropical rainforest are still lost each year. As the world’s biggest trader. and already 20% of the world’s tropical coral reefs have disappeared 21 . We continue to lose 13 million hectares of tropical rainforest each year. tea. As a strong supporter of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). This increasing demand for imports can however encourage exporting countries to over-exploit their resources and deplete their biodiversity. vegetable oils. • provide the right market signals for biodiversity conservation. to reduce its own biodiversity footprint on the rest of the world and assist developing countries in their efforts to conserve biodiversity and ensure its sustainable use. The continuing loss of biodiversity around the world demands concerted international action. bananas. with an additional 50% at risk. timber and fish etc. phase out and eliminate harmful subsidies at both EU and Member State level and to provide positive incentives for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use. but also. • ‘biodiversity proof’ EU development cooperation programmes and projects in order to minimise their negative impacts on biodiversity. the EU will aim to mobilise additional resources for global biodiversity conservation from all possible sources. whilst eliminating as far as possible any negative impacts of EU trade agreements.

as required by the global target. the EU will take measures (which may include demand and/or supply side measures) to reduce the biodiversity impacts of EU consumption patterns. by identifying and evaluating potential impacts on biodiversity resulting from the liberalisation of trade and investment through exante Trade Sustainability Impact Assessments and ex-post evaluations. and seek to include in all new trade agreements a chapter on sustainable development providing for substantial environmental provisions of importance in the trade context including on biodiversity goals. and to provide positive incentives for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use. 17c) The Commission will work with Member States and key stakeholders to provide the right market signals for biodiversity conservation. Action 20 Regulate access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from their use 20) The Commission will propose legislation to implement the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilisation in the European Union so that the EU can ratify the Protocol as soon as possible and by 2015 at the latest. Action 17 Reduce indirect drivers of biodiversity loss 17a) Under the EU flagship initiative on resource efficiency. 17b) The Commission will enhance the contribution of trade policy to conserving biodiversity and address potential negative impacts by systematically including it as part of trade negotiations and dialogues with third countries. 18b) The Commission will improve the effectiveness of EU funding for global biodiversity inter alia by supporting natural capital assessments in recipient countries and the development and/ or updating of National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans. including work to reform. and by improving coordination within the EU and with key nonEU donors in implementing biodiversity assistance/projects. and undertake Strategic Environmental Assessments and/or Environmental Impact Assessments for actions likely to have significant effects on biodiversity. As the world’s biggest trader. phase out and eliminate harmful subsidies at both EU and Member State level. particularly for resources that have significant negative effects on biodiversity. Europe has a special responsibility for stemming the illegal trade in species and ensuring that the products it imports come from sustainable sources 22 .Target 6 Help avert global biodiversity loss By 2020. Action 19 ‘Biodiversity-proof’ EU development cooperation 19) The Commission will continue to systematically screen its development cooperation action to minimise any negative impact on biodiversity. the EU has stepped up its contribution to averting global biodiversity loss. Action 18 Mobilise additional resources for global biodiversity conservation 18a) The Commission and Member States will contribute their fair share to international efforts to significantly increase resources for global biodiversity as part of the international process aimed at estimating biodiversity funding needs and adopting resource mobilisation targets for biodiversity at the 10th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in 2012.

Implementation of the EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy The Natura 2000 Network covers around 18% of the EU territory and protects the habitats of highly endangered species. such as the brown bear Ursus arctus 23 .

The Commission and Member States will pay particular attention to securing a better uptake and distribution of EU funds under the current and future Multi-annual Financial Framework for 2014–2020. fisheries. such as the use of Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) which reward those who provide public ecosystem goods and services. which is estimated to require an annual investment of around €5.Mobilising resources Achieving the objectives of this strategy will depend on the availability and efficient use of financial resources. representing a total expenditure of over €1. climate protection and other environmental actions. regional policy and climate change.100 nature conservation projects have been co-funded by the LIFE programme. These projects have made a significant contribution to improving the conservation status of numerous species and habitats protected by the two EU Nature Directives. In these difficult economic times there will also be a need to examine ways of diversifying funding sources from public and private sources and of developing innovative approaches to funding. over 1.8 billion a year. Achieving the EU 2020 biodiversity targets requires the full engagement of all sectors of society Continuing support from the EU LIFE programme The LIFE programme is the EU’s funding instrument for the environment. as well as to wider biodiversity goals. whilst for others there will be a need to scale up present funding sources and promote new ones. For some targets. This should be achieved by rationalising available resources and maximising the combined benefits of the different sources of funding. Such an approach will not only enable Member States to allocate the necessary resources at national and regional level but also to make better use of EU funds.7 billion. In view of the success of the LIFE+ programme (2007–2013) the Commission intends to propose a follow-up programme for the next budgetary period (2014–2020) in order to continue its support for key nature conservation. including funding for agriculture and rural development. Since 1992. Half the budget is dedicated to supporting good practice and demonstration projects that contribute to the implementation of the Birds and Habitats Directives and the Natura 2000 Network. the focus will be on ensuring a more effective takeup and redistribution of existing resources. The potential of biodiversity offsets to ensure no net loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services will also be explored. This will be especially important for the effective management of the Natura 2000 Network. To achieve this level of funding it is clear that a more strategic approach is needed. 24 .

Particular efforts will therefore be made during the implementation of the new strategy to reinforce cooperation. and support work on valuation of biodiversity and ecosystem services in developing countries. In particular the Commission will: • further develop the EU Business and Biodiversity Platform. synergies and the establishment of common priorities with the biodiversity-related Conventions. The Commission will continue working with other partners to publicise and implement the TEEB recommendations at EU level and support work on valuation of biodiversity and ecosystem services in developing countries. Citizen science initiatives. ensuring coherence with relevant recommendations set out in the European Territorial Agenda. • continue working with other partners to publicise and implement the TEEB recommendations at EU level.Partnerships for biodiversity Achieving the EU 2020 targets also requires the full engagement and commitment of a wide variety of other stakeholders. • further encourage collaboration between researchers and other stakeholders involved in spatial planning and land use management in implementing biodiversity strategies at all levels. and to ensure that they are reflected in decision-making at all levels. in particular candidate countries and potential candidates. • support ongoing efforts to improve collaboration. • encourage the active involvement of civil society at all levels of implementation. with key sectors of business and society. and build effective longlasting partnerships. for instance. 25 . are a valuable means of gathering high-quality data while mobilising citizens to get involved in biodiversity conservation activities. which brings together businesses from different sectors to share their experiences and best practices. • work with the outermost regions and overseas countries and territories through the BEST (Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Territories of European Overseas) initiative to promote biodiversity conservation and sustainable use. • reinforce its dialogue and cooperation on biodiversity with key partners. to develop or adjust their policies to meet the 2020 biodiversity targets. Monetising the value of ecosystem services is important to raise awareness of biodiversity values. A number of key partnerships will be expanded and promoted to support this strategy.

The Common Implementation Framework will be designed to: • facilitate implementation of the EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy by putting in place a clear and logical governance framework that is as efficient as possible. The scope of current stakeholder representation should be broadened. beyond the traditional biodiversity community. up-to-date and peerreviewed information.eu/ A Biodiversity Information System for Europe (BISE) has been set up. 26 . sectors and institutions. data and knowledge on biodiversity in Europe. involving also other key actors.europa. with Member States. It will be further supported by an integrated framework for monitoring. assessing and reporting on the 2020 Strategy which will be used to monitor the progress made in achieving the targets of the strategy and improving the state of biodiversity in the EU. It will also enable adjustments to be made to the strategy in light of these findings and as new information becomes available. • ensure the involvement of all relevant stakeholders at the appropriate level of policy making. Participatory planning and integrated management are vital for biodiversity conservation New infohub for EU biodiversity http://biodiversity. sub-national – responsible for ensuring the implementation of the Strategy. ministries and institutions in implementation of the Strategy. a Common Implementation Framework. • create common understanding and ownership for the implementation of the Biodiversity Strategy across all relevant policy areas by involving representatives from a wide range of services. This is the single point of access for consistent. share information and best practice and address common challenges. the Commission will develop.Developing a common implementation framework The Biodiversity Strategy underlines the need for close coordination between authorities at all levels – EU. For this purpose. national. • minimise duplication of effort and maximise synergies between efforts undertaken at different levels and by different actors and stakeholders.

corncrake ©David Kjaer. brown bear ©i-Stockphoto. otters ©David Kjaer.eu Convention on Biological Diversity Outcome of COP 10 Meeting.europa.int/cop10/doc/ The Natura 2000 Network http://ec.biodiversity. red-breasted goose ©David Kjaer. marble quarry ©i-Stockphoto.consilium. large blue butterfly ©Jim Asher.eu/publications/eu-2010-biodiversity-baseline The 2006 EU Biodiversity Action Plan and 2010 Assessment http://ec.europa. bumblebee on foxglove ©Stephen Dalton/ naturepl. Page 6 Sand dune ©i-Stockphoto. 27 .htm European Commission Nature and Biodiversity website http://ec. Nagoya. volunteer ©BBOWT/Rachel Hudson. LIFE project site Portugal ©LIFE00_NAT_P_007088. large copper ©Jim Asher. volunteer ©BBOWT/Amy Lewis. Page 26 EU biodiversity policy meeting ©European Commission. Page 8 flower-rich grassland ©Paul Hobson/naturepl. Page 25 mountain walkers ©Roca/Shutterstock. cork oak ©Robert Paul van Beets/Shutterstock. bullfinch ©David Kjaer. Page 16 forest ©i-Stockphoto. Page 24 EU-Life project meeting ©LIFE04_NAT_ IT_000182.com. Japan. viaduct ©LianeM/Shutterstock. Page 7 flower-rich grassland ©Paul Hobson/naturepl.eu/environment/nature/index_en. Page 19 sustainable fishing/Rock-a-nore fisheries ©MCS/Marine Photobank. mountain walkers ©Roca/Shutterstock. Page 14 bogland ©Kerstin Sundseth. nature tourism ©i-Stockphoto.eu/environment/nature/biodiversity/comm2006/2020. orchard ©Nivellen77/Shutterstock. dolphin. illegal driftnet fishing ©Gavin Parsons/Marine Photobank.htm Photo credits Cover irises ©i-Stockphoto. water hyacinth ©i-Stockphoto. nature tourism ©June Scheffel/ Shutterstock.Further reading The EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 http://ec.eu/environment/nature/info/pubs/docs/2010_bap. restoring a wetland ©LIFE project. Page 11 farmland ©Still Pictures. orchard fruits © Anna Subbotina/Shutterstock. coral reef ©i-Stockphoto.htm EU Vision and Headline Target EU leaders endorsement 26 March 2010 http://www. Page 12 red knot flock ©David Kjaer. Page 13 building a nature trail ©LIFE00_NAT_D_007039. turtle ©Naturepl. Page 23 brown bear ©i-Stockphoto.pdf Biodiversity Information System for Europe (BISE) www. Page 18 wasted fish ©Sarah Lelong/MarinePhotobank.eu/uedocs/cms_Data/docs/pressdata/en/ec/113591.europa.com. volunteers ©BBOWT/Tom Ryan.europa.com.com. large blue butterfly ©Jim Asher. Page 27 little owl ©David Kjaer. stakeholder dialogue ©LIFE02_NAT_E_008624.europa.eea.pdf 2010 EU Biodiversity Baseline http://www. October 2010 http://www. nature tourism ©Lauku Ceļotājs.europa.cbd. turtle ©Peter Leahy / Shutterstock.europa.eu/environment/ nature/natura2000/index_en. Page 20 harlequin ladybirds © Peter Creed. Page 9 beekeeper ©Kirsanov/Shutterstock. Page 21 deforestation ©i-Stockphoto. Page 15 mountain lake ©Xalanx/Shutterstock. river restoration ©LIFE00_ NAT_A_007069. Page 22 scarlet macaws/Fair Trade coffee/ harvesting coffee beans ©i-Stockphoto. Page 5 flower-rich grassland ©i-Stockphoto. dragonfly ©Llaas van Haeringen. tree frog ©LIFE00_A_007055.

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